9 Dermatologist-Recommended Products to Give Your Stressed-Out Skin a Break

Thanks to mask-ne (yes, mask acne is a thing), Zoom fatigue and late-night Netflix binges, our skin is looking kind of stressed out. While our first inclination was to whip up 12 different homemade facials, sometimes the answer isn’t more, it’s less. Going straight to the source, we put together a list of the best dermatologist-recommended products on the market to give your visage a little R&R. Here, nine products derms recommend for stressed-out skin.

cetaphil daily cleanser1

1. Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser Face Wash

There’s a reason why this classic has withstood the test of time. Cetaphil’s gentle facial cleanser is optimal for normal to oily skin and is clinically proven to give you a nice deep clean without leaving your skin dry or irritated. Its low-lather formula removes stuff like makeup and dirt, but leaves the natural oils that give you the healthy glow we’re all after.

BUY IT ($10)

cerave pm facial moisturizer

2. Cerave Pm Facial Moisturizing Lotion

While you sleep, this lightweight lotion works to restore the protective barrier of your skin with ceramides, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide (aka an iconic trio of ingredients that help the skin retain moisture). It’s gentle, it’s oil-free and it won’t clog your pores. Oh, did we mention the price?

elta md facial sunscreen

3. Elta Md Uv Daily Broad-spectrum Facial Sunscreen Spf 40

Whether you’re inside or out, skimping on SPF is a big no-no. (Did you know you also need SPF to protect against blue light?) This Elta MD formula gently protects the skin from UV rays and sun damage, while also enriching your skin with antioxidants. Derms love this product because it tackles skin dehydration, aging and dryness all at once and is paraben-free, sulfate-free and cruelty-free. Talk about multi-tasking.

differin face gel

4. Differin Adapalene Gel Acne Treatment

Although our teenage years are behind us, acne still tends to rear its not-so-cute head at the first sign of stress. Thankfully, this prescription-strength retinoid treatment is available over-the-counter and comes primed to clear acne and inflammation. Plus, the main active ingredient adapalene adjusts the speed of skin cell turnover, which helps to keep pores from clogging and targets acne even before it starts. Basically, it’s perfect for anyone who wants to combat acne and aging simultaneously.

image clear cell acne lotion

5. Image Clear Cell Acne Lotion

With five percent benzoyl peroxide, this lotion helps stop acne in its tracks, while the soothing properties of chamomile and tea tree extract calm irritated skin. Plus, with regular use, it reduces inflammation and redness and also has an anti-aging, hydrating and balancing formula. Sign us up.

obagi vitamin c serum

6. Obagi Medical Professional-c Serum

Vitamin C is revered for its ability to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while brightening and evening the skin tone. This powerful antioxidant also helps protect against environmental stressors and free radical damage. The professional-grade concentration of vitamin C in Obagi’s beloved face serum helps this fan-favorite do all that and more. Looking to smooth the texture of your skin and reduce hyperpigmentation (looking at you Melasma)? Then this is your serum.

image skincare vital c hydrating face serum

7. Image Skincare Vital C Hydrating A C E Face Serum

This concentrated essence is infused with vitamins A, C, E, and a power blend of plant antioxidants including green tea and echinacea extracts that help to reduce visible signs of aging and dryness. Plus, bearberry extract brings out a natural and radiant glow.

revision intellishade original tinted moisturizer1

8. Revision Intellishade Original Tinted Moisturizer Spf 45

Nourish your skin while looking Zoom-meeting ready with this perfecting tinted moisturizer. The sheer texture minimizes the appearance of pores and fine lines as it helps to even out skin tone, discoloration, redness and dark spots. Oh, and it has SPF 45 with both UVA and UVB spectrum coverage.

cerave hydrating cleanser duo pack

9. Cerave Hydrating Cleanser

This intensely-hydrating formula penetrates deep into the skin to nourish and plump. It gets the job done thanks to ceramides (they help restore the skin’s protective function), as well as moisturizing humectants and emollients. If you’re looking for something to cleanse and revitalize your skin, look no farther than this hyaluronic-acid-rich cleanser. It even comes with a convenient three-ounce bottle that’s great for stowing in a gym bag.

Lex Goodman

Cat mom, yogi, brunch enthusiast

Lex is an LA native who's deeply obsessed with picnics, Slim Aarons, rosé, Hollywood history and Joan Didion. She joined PureWow in early 2017.
read full bio